Mongolian Chicken

Mongolian chicken is another quick and easy Chinese takeout make at home meal. It has simple ingredients and technique, but a lot of flavor. Tender strips of chicken are lightly fried with cornstarch to give a crispy texture and they are served in a sweet, spicy ginger garlic and chili sauce with vegetables and rice.

As with most of my recipes that won’t be braised or slow cooked, I prefer to use boneless, skinless chicken breast for this. It is much nicer to eat than using thighs here. For the sauce you only need ginger, garlic, dried red chili peppers, scallions, soy sauce, brown sugar and some chicken stock.

As with most of stir fry dishes, I add some extra veggies. In this case I used snow peas and peppers. Carrots, bok choy or Chinese broccoli would also work. I also added a dash of soy vinegar to the sauce, along with a little sesame oil and white pepper for extra flavor.

Mongolian Chicken

sweet and spicy sauce with crispy chicken and vegetables
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 4 servings


  • 1 1/2 lbs thinly sliced boneless chicken breast
  • oil for pan frying the chicken
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1 red pepper thinly sliced
  • 1 onion thinly sliced
  • 8 oz snow peas strings removed
  • 1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
  • 5 dried red chili peppers I used Sichuan peppers, you can also us de arbol or any other small dried red chili
  • 6 garlic cloves chopped
  • 6 scallions sliced into 1 inch pieces
  • 6 tbsp soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup hot water or chicken stock I used water + chicken powder
  • 4 tbsp cornstarch mixed with 2 tbsp water for thickening sauce as needed
  • sesame oil, soy vinegar and white pepper to taste


  • Mixed the slice chicken with 2 tbsp of canola oil. Dredge some of the chicken in cornstarch, shaking off any excess. Do this in batches since you won't fry it all at the same time. Dredge each batch right before you fry it.
  • Heat about an inch of oil to a deep skillet and heat to 350. Add a portion of the chicken so that the pan is not crowded. Cook until the chicken is browned and crispy. Make sure it is cooked through by using an instant read thermometer or cut the largest piece open to check. Drain on paper towels and continue to fry until all the chicken is cooked.
  • Clean the pan and add 1 tbsp of oil. Heat over high until very hot and add the veggies. Cook without stirring until they get some charred spots, then stir. Only cook for a minute or two then set aside. Heat another tbsp of oil over medium high. Add the ginger and garlic and fry for 30 seconds. Add the chili peppers and scallions and fry briefly. Add the soy sauce, sugar, stock or water and bring to a simmer. Let the sauce simmer for a few minutes and taste. Add the sesame, white pepper and soy vinegar to taste as well as salt or soy sauce if the sauce needs it.
  • Slowly stir in a little of the cornstarch/water mixture and cook, stirring until the sauce thickens. Use as much as you need to thicken the sauce. You don't want so much that it gets gloopy. Add the chicken and veggies back to the sauce and toss everything. Serve over hot rice.
Keyword Chicken, Lunch, Main Dish

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